This was the first time I had ever traveled by myself. Anywhere. There was no direct flight to my son, so I would be laying over at DFW before landing at my agency's city. I would then drive about 3 hours from the airport to the hospital. I checked into my flight while waiting for my mom to park the car and learned a few valuable travel lessons:
- When flying through American Airlines, you are charged for your bags. The first bag is $50, the second is $75, and the third is $150. As I didn't have my baby yet, the car seat and stroller I brought with me counted as checked luggage, which had to be paid for. The lovely, helpful (yes, this is my sarcastic voice) airline employee thoughtfully inquired if I really wanted the last 2 bags. I explained that I was on my way to adopt my son and that I needed them. "Humph" was her reply as she put my credit card through.
- When it asks if you would like to be upgraded to first class for an extra $150, say yes. Then I would have received breakfast (not that I was hungry) and the extra bags would've been free.
My mom and I stood together just outside the security gate when my phone rang. It was P, the agency worker. She wanted to let me know that my son was born just after midnight that morning. He was 5 pounds, 10 ounces and was doing well. I calmly answered the medical questions about what I wanted for him (yes to the vitamin K shot, the drops, and circumcision) with no hint of apprehension in my voice (I hope). I relayed the information to my mom and asked her if I was doing the right thing. "Yes," she replied. "He's waiting for you." I think if she had said no, I would have headed back to the car; I was that scared.
I hugged and kissed her goodbye, went through the security check, and waited for my flight to get called. I texted my friend Heather (the one with the amazing little girl who started my mommy longing) to tell her I was waiting for my flight. She asked if she could spread the word to my incredibly supportive co-workers who've been with me since the beginning of this adoption journey. Sure, why not.
The flight itself was smooth. As a solo flyer, I had a seat in the front of the plane (yes!). I read my book on baby care and watched a few episodes of The Vampire Diaries on my iPod. Damon and Stefan helped pass the time for sure! It was a 5 hour flight with a 2 hour layover and another hour flight before reaching my agency's city. I had time to kill. As my plane landed and I turned on my phone, the text messages started to arrive from everyone. They were so happy for me and were sending prayers my way. That helped a lot. All too soon, my second flight landed and I was in my agency's city. It was time for the second part of my travels: the car ride.